Skip to main content
NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment
  • Share:

Bringing the waterways back to life


The NSW Government is working with the community and other stakeholders to bring to life the vision for Wianamatta* South Creek. The vision is for a restored and protected waterway system that nourishes a cool, green and inclusive Western Parkland City.


Wianamatta South Creek flows around 80km through one of the flattest, hottest and driest parts of Greater Sydney. The catchment area for Wianamatta South Creek (the total area of land over which the creek and its tributaries flow) covers 62,400 hectares.


Integrated planning of land use and water cycle management across the catchment will ensure that future development, infrastructure, open space, biodiversity and waterway management work together to support the health of the waterway system and help to achieve a cool, liveable and resilient Western Parkland City.


*Dharug for ‘Mother Place’


What are we doing?

To do justice to the ambitious, long-term vision for Wianamatta South Creek, we are taking an approach that considers the scale and timing of what needs to be achieved:

  • A broad delivery framework for the whole Wianamatta catchment, and
  • A place-based delivery strategy for the Wianamatta South Creek Precinct within the Western Sydney Aerotropolis.



Catchment-wide delivery framework

The catchment-wide delivery framework will be a central source of guidance and information for planning authorities, landowners, developers, infrastructure agencies and the wider community to plan and deliver the government’s commitments for the Wianamatta catchment.


Its purpose is to underpin long-term coordination across the catchment with a consistent approach to integrating land use and water cycle management. The framework will outline the overall vision and outcomes for Wianamatta, provide the context and mechanisms for delivery and include supporting tools and technical information.


We are developing this framework with a spatial digital platform which will map the locations of the important green (open space, biodiversity, tree canopy) and blue (waterways and water infrastructure) outcomes which will help to protect, connect and restore the Wianamatta catchment. 


This spatial platform will become a publicly available web-based tool to illustrate the progress in delivering green and blue outcomes for Wianamatta over time.


Spatial analysis of the Wianamatta South Creek catchment will be multi-layered and will include waterways, ground conditions, vegetation and proposed land uses.


Where are we up to?

Detailed spatial analysis has been undertaken to build the digital platform. We have integrated property and technical data layers across multiple categories such as flooding, soil profile and salinity, open space, tree canopy, active transport, stormwater infrastructure, biodiversity, heat vulnerability and indigenous culture and heritage.


This provides a unique integrated geographic platform to understand the opportunities, constraints, environmental and cultural values across the catchment. The interaction of these layers will help us to identify the areas most important and most able to deliver the green-blue outcomes for Wianamatta, and support long-term coordination, planning, investment and delivery across the eight local government areas in the catchment.


Place-based delivery strategy

The Wianamatta South Creek Precinct is an initial planning focus within the state led Western Sydney Aerotropolis planning area. The Precinct covers an area of approximately 1,330 hectares, and its boundary is defined in the State Environmental Planning Policy Western Sydney Aerotropolis 2020 (Aerotropolis SEPP). Land within the Precinct is zoned Environment and Recreation. A draft  Precinct Plan for the initial precincts in the Western Sydney Aerotropolis planning area, including the Wianamatta South Creek Precinct, is on exhibition until 12 March 2021. 


Draft Precinct Plans proposes specific objectives and future land uses for the Wianamatta South Creek Precinct. The place-based delivery strategy will set out how these objectives and uses can be achieved. It will identify any land that is proposed to be prioritised for public ownership and indicate the timing for delivery aligned to funding sources, the staging of development and provision of enabling infrastructure. 


Having a clear, place-based strategy to deliver the green-blue outcomes in the Precinct is important to provide certainty to landowners about the implications for their land. The strategy will also be important for current and potential future asset owners and managers to establish the Precinct’s delivery priorities, clarify responsibilities for management and identify funding pathways. No decisions have been made about delivering outcomes in the precinct, outside of the Thompsons Creek area that is identified for acquisition in the Aerotropolis SEPP.


What is involved

Detailed spatial analysis: We are assessing the current situation and proposed future of the land and waterways within the Wianamatta South Creek Precinct, to identify the areas that are most capable to support the Precinct’s intended outcomes. Our analysis builds on the spatial data collected for the whole catchment, incorporating finer grain land information, the proposed future land uses and additional data from the Precinct Plan, Aerotropolis technical studies and inputs from other planning currently underway in Western Sydney.


Joining the dots between governments, agencies, and the community: Given the importance of the Wianamatta catchment, we want to fully understand what other activities are taking place or are planned for local areas. We are talking to government agencies, local councils and utilities about their short and long-term plans, to get a better understanding of priorities. We are taking on board community and landowner feedback on the Aerotropolis planning instruments and draft Precinct Plans to understand and address the impacts on specific land holdings.


Design and test options: We are assessing the costs and benefits of different land uses, ownership and management options in the Precinct. This will thoroughly investigate different usage and design options for the place and what practical solutions are available to ensure that Wianamatta South Creek’s waterways, parklands, cultural and environmental features are places to love.


Ownership and management options we will evaluate include:

  • public ownership of land by state or local government or other authority for vegetation, open space, active transport, waterway health or stormwater functions
  • the potential role of a regional waterways and stormwater management authority
  • access arrangements and land needs for services, utilities and transport infrastructure
  • ongoing maintenance costs and responsibilities for different land uses
  • potential management arrangements, including funding availability, for land remaining in private ownership.


We are also investigating the costs and potential funding pathways to deliver green-blue outcomes in the Precinct, including healthy waterways and riparian lands, integrated water management, biodiversity conservation, open space, active transport, tree canopy and revegetation.


When finalised, the place-based delivery strategy will identify any land that is proposed to be prioritised for public ownership in the Wianamatta South Creek precinct and indicate the timing for delivery aligned to funding sources, the staging of development and provision of enabling infrastructure. It will also identify potential management arrangements and funding options available to support green and blue infrastructure outcomes in land remaining in private ownership. The delivery strategy will be designed to be updated periodically as the future of the Aerotropolis and Western Sydney continues to evolve, to reflect future precinct planning and development activities.



The place-based delivery strategy for the Wianamatta South Creek precinct is under development. So far, we have sought input and technical information from councils and key government agencies, and we will listen and talk to key stakeholders, including landowners, along the way. The approximate timetable looks like this:


Project timeline


Spatial analysis and options testing to identify future investment and land management strategies.


Develop draft findings and seek feedback from the community and stakeholders.


Incorporate feedback from the community, stakeholders and government agencies.


Release a final delivery strategy.


Want to know more?

Throughout 2021, we will update this web page as new information becomes available. We will also provide updates via email. Please register your details below if you would like to receive email updates on the Wianamatta South Creek delivery strategy.

Page last updated: 03/03/2021